Walk: Cinema Club (The Eagle Huntress), Japantown
Distance: 2.5 miles, home yoga
Aisholpan* and her Golden Eagle on Mongolian Steppes. (This is a real picture)
Hunting with eagles is a traditional form of falconry found throughout the Eurasian steppe and dating back to at least the 1st or 2nd millenium BC. Entire civilizations have rested on and been preserved by the strength of this nomadic tradition. It is passed on through certain nomad tribes from master to master - men who have acquired the art and have it in their blood, often father to son. It is done far from civilization on unforgiving terrain in unfathomably severe weather. It takes courage, strength, stamina, resourcefulness, patience, endurance - and then a sort of special ken that transcends even those things.
For thousands of years no woman has attempted national mastery in eagle hunting - until last year when a 13 year old girl rode with her father into the annual eagle hunting competition in Mongolia. The competition is world renowned, many had already gathered. She was completely unannounced and a spectacle no man, woman or child had ever seen. Remarkably, possibly because her father was a repeat champion, she was allowed to register and compete. This was Step One for her and her bird; there was much more ahead.
It is all captured in real time in a stunning, stirring, gorgeous new documentary Citw's Cinema Club screened today: The Eagle Huntress. It's a marvelous true story; if nothing else, go for the scenery and to witness as dignified and respectful father-daughter relationship as you will ever see.
PS - Looking at the weather in the movie Ciwt remembered childhood cold and also reconsidered becoming a Presidio docent with the (hopefully) rainy, Pacific storm season just ahead.
* Also spelled Ashol-Pan